Consistent practice of Yoga (union of the individual and the Absolute) can help achieve the balance necessary to reach a state of moksa (liberation). Everyone is capable of this; none are exempt.
[ rp @4pathfinder
Mystical experiences are usually conceived of as coinciding with altered states of consciousness. As a result, a consideration of mystical states should begin with a discussion of consciousness itself. Yet the nature of consciousness is one of the most fundamental and difficult of all philosophical questions.
In the West it is commonly assumed that our usual waking state is optimal. Yet many religious and contemplative traditions make claims about consciousness that run counter to Western assumptions, among them that:
1. Our usual state of consciousness is severely suboptimal or deficient;
2. Multiple states of consciousness - including true “higher states” - exist;
3. These states can be attained through training;
4. Verbal communication about them may be necessarily limited.
The teachings of mystical traditions inform us that our usual state of consciousness is not only suboptimal, but dreamlike and illusory. They assert that whether we know it or not, without mental training, we are prisoners of our own minds, unwittingly trapped by a continuous inner dialogue that creates an all-consuming distortion of perception. These traditions suggest that we live in a collective dream variously known as maya, “illusion,” or what psychologist Charles Tart calls “consensus trance”
Obviously, if these various philosophies regard our usual state as suboptimal, they must regard some other state as superior. Numerous traditions converge on the idea that the "Unio Mystica", described by mystics and saints, constitutes the supreme states of consciousness - and in fact is the highest achievement of human existence. In these states the mystic transcends the usual boundaries of ego and feels at one with the universe.
Usually the state of mystical union arrives after years or even decades of intense spiritual and mental discipline. This training aims to overcome the fact that, as Sigmund Freud said, “man is not even master in his own house ... in his own mind.”